OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – On Thursday, the Board of Oklahoma County Commissioners will vote on three proposals that would redistrict parts of the county.
“I know our population has grown. So the census is not correct. Period,” Ray Poland, mayor of Jones, said during public comment at Monday’s Board of Oklahoma County Commissioners meeting.
Public comment at Monday’s meeting got heated as residents of Oklahoma County’s districts one and three spoke about potential new boundary maps.
“It seems incredibly drastic to change two entire communities and all of the unincorporated area between those communities with one fell swoop,” Carl Johnson, superintendent for Jones Public Schools, said.
“Luther public schools has a long standing relationship with district 1,” Barry Gunn, superintendent for Luther Public Schools, said.
Three redistricted county maps were presented at the meeting. The first would take Jones and Luther out of district one and move them to Commissioner Kevin Calvey’s district, which is district three.
“Why am I in three instead of just shooting two on up to encompass us all. What does Harrah and Choctaw have to do with Nichols Hills,” Jennifer Edmunson, who lives in district one, said.
Option one would also move The Village from district three to district one.
“Shame on you guys. You really want to say this is not partisan? This is over numbers?” Sean Cummings, who lives in The Village, said.
“It basically makes district 1 an urban district and cuts the road miles down in my district that we’re responsible for to 60 miles, which would cut my budget in more than half,” Commissioner Carrie Blumert, district one, said.
Commissioner Blumert proposed the current lines be adjusted just a tad, keeping Luther, Jones and the surrounding areas in her district.
“There really doesn’t need to be a lot of change. I needed to gain about 18,000 residents and commissioner Calvey needed to lose about 18,000 residents. That’s really all that needs to happen,” Blumert said.
Commissioner Brian Maughan’s proposal also would not be quite as drastic as option one. It would move Nicoma Park and some areas of south Oklahoma City from district two to Blumert’s district.
“If I could trade out a community with her that she was willing to accept, then that would help level out those road mile requests that she was hoping to have,” Maughan said.
The BOCC will vote on those three proposals at a special meeting on Thursday at 11 a.m.